Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Writing { and reading and publishing } ~

Tag Archives: humanity


Just ReBlogging a post from two months before my short novel was published—working on the second book in the series and could well apply these thoughts to the third book—once all three are out, my Work will be nearly done…

Notes from An Alien

I’m engaged in a discussion over in the forums of BestsellerBound about why the theme of my soon-to-be-published book will make it hard to sell.

I knew as I planned and wrote it that it would be, at the very best, a niche-book–of interest to a rather small audience.

While I certainly didn’t even attempt to write it for the “general reader”, I do hope that some small yet significant group of readers will find it valuable.

It is a story, yet the Prologue says: “…this book is a story told in ‘notes’. Even though some readers may think it is a novel or a history, its form is difficult to classify in what are called genres.”

The working blurb I have is even more indicative of Notes from An Alien being a book that won’t appeal to a wide market: Start with a 500-year InterWorld War. Continue through ecological…

View original post 403 more words

Advertisements

Can A Rant Be Beautiful?


The beginning of a comment I left on a blog post: “I feel your angst because I’ve felt that angst; and, even though I finally have answers, my angst has merely turned into bleeding grief for our Human Family.” The post, Wasteful, is a beautiful rant about modern incompetence and poverty. It reminded me of my novel, Notes from An Alien, which was written out of that bleeding grief and might help a few folks find ways of coping with the rampant insanity choking our world.

Cheryl Ives wrote the post and, after what I consider a beautiful rant about how modern incompetence is dangerously expensive, she lays out these four points:

1) Poverty is too expensive. It’s dragging us down and must not be permitted to grow or remain at the same rate
2) Poverty is so expensive because we grossly mismanage our resources
3) In the long run, it’s cheaper to do the right thing
4) Society is currently too immature to focus on the long run with any sustained momentum

While all four points are beautiful to me, I want to focus on what Cheryl says Society is too immature to focus on.

The Long Run

Notes from An Alien attempts to instill a sense of the Long Run by following eight generations of a family involved in helping their Worlds rise from war, greed, and poverty to enduring peace.

The Long Run on Earth has involved Humanity in the gargantuan effort of unifying itself at successive levels of complexity–family, tribe, city state, nation, and, now, the whole globe.

Notes from An Alien shows a civilization from another star system learning from their Long Run. Humanity is on the verge of a consummate transformation that will bring its Long Run into focus and, finally, bring Peace and Tranquility to our Global Family.

Cheryl also says: “At the core is my heartfelt belief that humans could … have the capacity to ensure that every life on the planet has shelter, food, water, clean air, some measure of security, and the ability to implement hygiene. It’s not an adequate goal but still pie-in-the-sky enough to be going on with.

“That we haven’t already achieved this provides simply another example of how badly things are done.”

So, the ultimate beauty of this rant is that Cheryl is one of the people doing something to help humanity. In case you’re new to this blog, I also featured her in the post, An “Open Source” Novel ??, that talks about a very unifying literary project :-)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)

Take Part In Our Reader Survey

Get A Free Copy of the book, Notes from An Alien

The Fiction Game


Is fiction just a game authors play with readers?

Let’s look at some of the root meanings of “fiction” and “game”:

Fiction: something invented; a fashioning or feigning; to shape, form, devise; to knead, form out of clay

Game: joy, fun, amusement; participation, communion; people together

Seems like fiction, with its ability to invent ways, that can be fun, to bring people together, to shape and form situations that can induce communion, readers empathizing with characters, can actually be a valid and valuable game to play

Awhile back, I wrote a post called, World Crises And Fiction Writers ~ Can They Help Humanity?, which is worth looking at, especially for all the comments readers made.

In that post I was exploring the idea that fiction can be used to “enlighten” the reader about social/global issues; not to preach but to present, not to moralize but to model, not to solve but to impel creative response.

Today, I watched an amazing video about a teacher who created a World Peace Game for his fourth graders. The game is a fiction but the children take it very seriously; and, they resolve issues that most adults find baffling.

For all you writers out there, I think this video could also give you some creative ideas for how to simulate a story

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)
Take Part In Our Reader Survey
Follow the “co-author” of Notes from An Alien, Sena Quaren:
On Twitter
AND, Get A Free Copy of Our Book

Global Issues ~ Notes from an Alien


I spend a significant amount of time in a virtual world, Second Life. I’m the Events Manager for a place called Book Island and I’ve been having live readings every Thursday of chapters from my soon-to-be-published book, Notes from An Alien (get a free copy with the link over there in the side-panel).

Well, I finished reading the chapters and will be changing the format of my weekly event next Thursday, the 28th of April.

We’ll be having consultations about the various issues the book raises.

On a recent read-through of the manuscript, to assure myself that I actually had a final manuscript, I made a listing of the major issues.

If this is your first exposure to what my book is about, here’s my elevator-pitch:

Notes from An Alien is a Documentary Novel about an alien civilization’s rise from

greed, corruption, and war to enduring peace.

 

Here’s a listing (by no means complete) of various issues the novel raises, along with the chapters having significant action related to the issue:

Corporate Greed – 1, 2
Corporate Control of Populace – 1, 2, 4
Religious Wars – 1, 2, 3
Prophetic Predictions – 1, 3, 5
War-Just/Unjust – 1, 10
Constant Expansion As A Solution – 1, 2, 11
Non-Religious Religions – 1, 2, 3, 5, 7, 13
Military Control of Populations – 2
Rational Religion – 2, 3, 5, 6, 7, 11
Corporate Ecological Damage – 2, 4, 5
Material Realm/Spiritual Realm – 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 12, 13, 19
Science and Faith – 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 15
Spiritual Practice – 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 11
Costs of War – 3, 4, 5, 10, 11
Governance – 5, 6, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14
Oneness of All People – 6, 7, 8, 14, 16, 19
Economic Issues – 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 13
Altruism and Sacrifice – 7, 9, 11, 17
True Peace – 11, 12, 17, 18, 19

I’m sure I’ll learn one heck of a lot about how to facilitate discussions and keep them from turning into arguments :-)
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)
Take Part In Our Reader Survey
Follow the “co-author” of Notes from An Alien, Sena Quaren:
On Twitter
AND,
Get A Free Copy of Our Book

Writers’ Responsibilities ~ Revisited …


In the two posts, World Crises And The Fiction Writer ~ Can They Help Humanity? and Two Post Mashup + A Video ~ Writers’ Responsibilities, various ideas of the writer’s responsibilities to society were explored.

One of the comments, from a man who has taught English for over 40 years, was challenging enough that I felt compelled to feature it in this post. I encourage you to also visit his blog for some equally challenging sonnets.

I’m hoping that those who read the following comment will let all their heart-felt thoughts pour into comments of their own

~~~

“It is odd that while we know that in the greatest periods of any particular art, its purpose was religious in scope, not at all subjective but objective in its presentation of the ideas and beliefs; the persecution of so many of the artists of any given period of greatness before their ultimate acceptance implies that whatever the message or content of a work, it “hit home” in such a way as to enrage the secular and religious leadership who openly opposed such artists of stature who are today revered as the “greats” of the past.

“Ultimately the works of such artists outlived their opponents. In the struggle to make the transition between zeitgeists comes the problem of what to say and what not to say; what to portray and what not to portray, with the confusion being that in the transition, there is no precedent for the artist’s work while at the same time, it has become patently obvious that what passed for art in the past was no longer capable of either sustaining or maintaining the old world order.

“The result, then, is that literature and the other arts are reduced to what amounts to mere entertainment with no true purpose but to while away the hours of some very bored audiences and/or readers. I think we are there at present. For the most part, artists seem to me to be ‘closet entrepreneurs’ no matter how seemingly positive their apparent productions or the causes they appear to be furthering.

“The past is finished; the future is not yet here. This leads both producers and consumers of the arts with no choice but to demand the ‘quick fix’ that is the very definition of entertainment rather than the didactic purpose of the arts in their generic state. Socrates was sentenced to death for his assertions; Galileo was merely told to shut his mouth about the now obvious position of the earth vis-à-vis the solar system.

“How long the present state of affairs will continue is at best a guestimate but I suspect it will continue right up to the moment of the physical results of mental and spiritual deprivation; in short, nothing short of an atomic bomb or a Third World War or repeated warnings in the form of earthquakes, tsunamis, and nuclear accidents as were seen recently in Japan and Haiti will jumpstart the present state of the arts to begin to move forward into anything other than hortatory goals.

“It does not mean that writers should cease writing, but it does preclude expectations in kudos or even remuneration for writing except in rare cases of accidental acclaim.

“Writing for the joy of it achieves a great end in and of itself because it is free of the active prostitution of the arts and connects with the few in this world who hold to integrity above the advantages of fascist circles of  ‘quick fixes’ that leave the ‘mainstream’ at the top and everything else so far off the chart that there is no register in the chart at all.”
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Our Comment Link Is At The Top of The Post :-)
Follow the “co-author” of Notes from An Alien, Sena Quaren:
On Twitter
AND, Get A Free Copy of Our Book